Sour Cream Coffee Cake

by Anne Maxfield on February 9, 2017

Accidental Locavore Sour Cream Coffee CakeSour cream coffee cake is definitely a throwback to another era.

It’s comfort food and seems to be making a comeback.

For whatever reason, it’s been on the Accidental Locavore’s radar for a while now.

But there were all those apple cakes.

And then, today, it seemed like the right time.

Months ago, I found the recipe my friend Alan’s mom gave me way back when.

She made the best coffee cake and she finally gave me the recipe (after I swore that the little cactus I gave Alan was in fact a cactus and not a marijuana plant).

This is easy and quick to put together and will always make you feel better.

Accidental Locavore Coffee Cake RecipeSour Cream Coffee Cake Recipe:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup butter (or from the original recipe, margarine)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease an angle food pan or 9×9” baking dish.

Cream together sugars, butter, salt, eggs and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and baking soda until well combined.

Add the sour cream and then the flour mixture to the creamed ingredients and beat at a slow speed until very smooth.

In a small bowl, mix the brown sugar, cinnamon and nuts for the toppling.

Spoon half the batter into the pan and sprinkle half the topping evenly over it.

Pour the rest of the batter into the pan and top with the remaining topping.

Bake for 45-50 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Serve and enjoy!Accidental Locavore Coffee Cake Swirl

My verdict:

Almost as good as I remembered it! I’d like more topping and more swirl but that’s easily fixed with more sugar and maybe some butter – like a streusel topping. Going back to the apples, they’d make a good topping too (but I’d cut them into smaller cubes).

Since nuts are no longer part of my culinary vocabulary, I used dark brown sugar and cinnamon and sprinkled some maple sugar balls on the top.

And if you’re feeling blue about whatever, it’s a great start to the day!





Pumpkin Spice Overload

by Anne Maxfield on October 17, 2016

accidental-locavore-pumpkin-spice-bagelsPumpkin Spice:






Warm spices.

All good stuff– makes your house smell wonderful.


accidental-locavore-pumpkin-spice-teaThese days, it seems that there is almost nothing that wouldn’t benefit from some “limited edition pumpkin spice.”

Tipping point for the Accidental Locavore?

Possibly the sneakers.

Or maybe the fact that you could make at least one day’s meals, along with cocktails, snacks and after-dinner drinks entirely with pumpkin spiced (processed) foods.

And between meals, do a wash and brighten your clothes with pumpkin spiced Clorox*.

accidental-locavore-pumpkin-spice-oreosWhat could be better than this? “Pumpkin Gingerbread is scented with the enticing aromas of holiday baking”. Are you sitting down? It’s dog shampoo (and comes in caramel apple too).

Can we all agree that this is way too much of a good thing?
Between People Magazine’s Comprehensive Guide to Pumpkin Spiced Flavored Foods” a 58 slide show and Eater’s “65 Pumpkin Spice Foods That Have No Business Being Pumpkin Spiced” you’ve got 123 items (okay, some may be dups, but you get the point) and that’s just stuff you can eat or drink!

Actually, making a pumpkin spice blend is a snap.

accidental-locavore-pumpkin-spice-ingredientsThis from Betty Crocker: To start, you’ll need all of three minutes and the following ingredients: 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg, 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice and 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves. Mix the spices together in a small bowl and take a little whiff.

Don’t you love the part about the little whiff? I’d also take a little taste and adjust according to your taste.

Now that you’ve got that, your own imagination is all that stands between you and __________.

Add some to sugar and sprinkle on buttered toast. Isn’t that better than a pumpkin spiced English muffin with PS cream cheese? It would also be good with oatmeal, granola or cereal (and taste a whole lot better because you’re using real spices).

Or go the savory route and sprinkle some on chicken or lamb. It’s a combination used in a lot of Middle Eastern and Indian dishes.

And there’s always pumpkin pie…


*Trick or treat. This may not be a real thing.




Pork Vindaloo

by Anne Maxfield on March 26, 2015

Accidental Locavore Pork VindalooOften what’s for dinner depends on what looks amusing at the market. This week, pork was on sale so the Accidental Locavore brought some home and figured it would turn into a meal. This was a recipe I found on Saveur. It may look like a lot of ingredients, but it’s mostly spices you probably already have. Serves 4.

  • 2 lb. boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2″ pieces
  • ⅓ cup white wine vinegar
  • Salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 10 whole black peppercorns
  • 6 chiles de árbol, stemmed and seeded
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • ½ tsp. ground turmeric
  • 8 cloves garlic, 4 peeled, 4 roughly chopped
  • 2 small red Thai chiles or 2 red jalapeños, stemmed
  • A 2”piece ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ⅓ cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 stick cinnamon, halved
  • 2 small green Thai chiles or 1 serrano, halved and seeded
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar


Accidental Locavore Vindaloo MarinatingIn a medium bowl, toss pork, vinegar, and salt. Cook cumin and poppy seeds, peppercorns, chiles de árbol, and cloves in a small skillet over medium heat until seeds pop, 1–2 minutes. Let cool and transfer to a spice grinder; grind into a powder and add to pork. Put tamarind paste, turmeric, peeled garlic, red chiles, and ginger in a food processor or blender and purée into a paste and add to pork. Toss to coat; cover and chill 4 hours.
Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat; cook mustard seeds and cinnamon until seeds pop, 1–2 minutes. Add chopped garlic, green chiles, and onion; cook until slightly caramelized, 8–10 minutes. Stir in pork and its marinade; cook until paste begins to brown, 5–7 minutes. Add salt and 1¼ cups water, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, covered and stirring occasionally, until pork is tender, about 1 hour. Stir in brown sugar and cook until thickened, 8–10 minutes. Serve over basmati rice and enjoy!

My verdict: Spicy (but manageable) and delicious! I used a Boston butt and the meat was really tender. Still burning from the way-too-hot chile, I seeded the chiles de árbol and used really small ones and seeded the serrano and this was spicy but under control. Having some mango chutney on the side also helped. Not having any poppy seeds, I tossed in black sesame seeds, mostly because they were small, round and black and I didn’t think a teaspoon full was going to make a huge difference. Frank liked it too and told me I could make it again (hehehe).